(SportsNetwork.com) - The Western Conference playoff field is set, but teams are still jockeying for positions. The St. Louis Blues and Minnesota Wild will both try to improve their playoff standing on Saturday when they meet at Scottrade Center.
The Blues clinched the Central Division title on Thursday and they will have home-ice advantage for at least the first two rounds. St. Louis can still claim home ice through the conference playoffs if it can edge Anaheim for the top seed in the West.
Both the Blues and Ducks have 107 points and Anaheim finishes its regular season tonight at Arizona. The Ducks own the tiebreaker with one more regulation/overtime win (ROW) than St. Louis.
The Wild currently occupy the first of two wild card spots in the West and can fall no further than that. They also are two points behind Chicago for the third seed from the Central and own the ROW tiebreaker over the Blackhawks, who cap their schedule tonight at Colorado.
The Blues won their first division title since 2012 on Thursday thanks to a win over Chicago and Nashville's loss against Minnesota. Jake Allen helped St. Louis take care of its part of the equation, stopping 21 shots in the 2-1 regulation win.
"It's a good feeling to be able to clinch home ice, win the Central," said Allen. "I didn't expect I'd be playing in that game, but it was great to be out there."
Dmitrij Jaskin and Paul Stastny both lit the lamp for the Blues, who have won four of their last five games.
St. Louis will get a trio of players back in the lineup Saturday, as forwards Vladimir Tarasenko and Alexander Steen and defenseman Robert Bortuzzo are expected to return.
Tarasenko, the Blues' leader in goals (36) and points (71), missed the last five games with a lower-body injury, while Steen (lower body) has missed six games. Steen is second on the team in assists (38) and ranks third in points (62). Bortuzzo missed the last two games with an upper-body issue.
Brian Elliott will start in net today after Allen got the call in the previous three outings. Elliott is 6-2-0 with a 2.36 goals against average in 10 career games against the Wild.
Minnesota secured a playoff spot with Tuesday's win in Chicago and followed with a 4-2 decision against Nashville in the middle test of a three-game road trip on Thursday.
Jason Zucker scored two of the Wild's four unanswered goals to help the club rally past the Predators and extend its road win streak to 12 games. Marco Scandella and Jason Pominville also scored for Minnesota, while Darcy Kuemper made 32 saves in the win.
Kuemper saw his first action since Jan. 20 as workhorse goaltender Devan Dubnyk received a rest for the first time since Minnesota acquired him in a trade with Arizona on Jan. 14.
"Real happy for him," Wild head coach Mike Yeo said of Kuemper. "Happy about how our guys played in front of him, too."
Thanks in large part to the play of Dubnyk, the Wild own an NHL-best 28-8-3 record since Jan. 14. Dubnyk could be back in net today and is 2-7-0 with a 4.07 GAA in his career against St. Louis.
Minnesota has won two straight against the Blues and is 3-0-1 over the last four meetings. The Wild halted a six-game slide in St. Louis with a 3-1 victory at Scottrade Center on March 14.
St. Louis is 26-12-2 as the host this season and the Wild are 24-14-2 on the road.